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International Student and Scholar Support

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Social Security and Taxes

Income is taxable in the United States. If you were present in the United States at any point during the previous calendar year, you should file for taxes when filing season begins (February through April of each year). As a South Carolina resident, you need to file federal and state taxes. Even if you did not earn income, you need to report your lack of income to the federal government. The filing deadline, also know as "Tax Day," is typically April 15th of each year or is a date close to April 15th.

Understanding Taxes as an International Student


In the United States, all adults present in the country are responsible for filing taxes. As an international student, this includes you, regardless of whether or not you have employment.

All Students

If you were present in the U.S. during the previous calendar year, you need to file your taxes. It does not matter if you had employment--all students need to file. Are you worried about how to do this? Never fear! ISS offers assistance for all F-1 and J-1 students through the tax filing program, which is customized for international students. This information will be available February through April of each year. 

After 5 Year of Residence in the United States

If you have been in the U.S. for 5 years or more, you may qualify as a resident for tax purposes. This means that our tax program may not work for you, and you may need to pursue your own tax filing assistance through Turbotax or another similar company. 

Living in South Carolina

South Carolina has a state income tax in addition to the federal income tax. As a South Carolina resident, you will be responsible for filing both federal income taxes and state income taxes for the previous calendar year if you earned income. 

Students With Scholarships

Student athletes and others who receive taxable scholarships should make sure to include all information about their scholarships when utilizing the tax service provided by International Student Services.

Students Who Did Not Earn Income in the Previous Calendar Year

You should still file a Form 8843 with the federal government certifying that you did not earn income.

The advisors at ISS are not tax specialists. All information on this page is intended to be general advice for informational purposes only.

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